MANILA, Philippines – Globe Telecom Incorporated has set an $850 million (P42.38 billion) capital spending budget for 2018 alone, same level as last year, mainly to fund its commitment to provide fast internet service to two million homes by 2020.
Globe told the local bourse on Friday, January 5, that its board of directors approved the telco's cash capital expenditure (CAPEX) budget of $850 million for 2018, same budget it earmarked last year.
The Ayala-led telecommunications giant said it will continue to expand its data network and address the surge in customer demand for on-demand video content. (READ: DICT delays rule on 1-year expiration for prepaid load worth less than P300)
"Majority of the company's CAPEX for 2018 is geared to meet customer demand for more bandwidth-intensive content, which, in turn, will support the revenue momentum of our data-related services," Globe president and chief executive officer Ernest Cu said in a statement.
Cu said Globe has progressively increased its capital spending since 2015, averaging 31% annually on a CAPEX-to-revenue ratio basis.
A good portion of the telco's capital spending budget will be utilized for the deployment of massive MIMO technology, aimed at expanding and enhancing its LTE network, Cu said.
The MIMO technology enables a mobile network to multiply the capacity of a wireless connection without requiring more antennas. It also increases wireless throughput, accommodating more users at higher data rates with better reliability while consuming less power.
Last month, PLDT Incorporated chairman Manuel Pangilinan also said his firm expects to book over P50 billion in capital expenditures for 2018, to boost its fixed-line and wireless internet network.
"We will announce a historic high capex next year, north of P50 billion. We want to make a statement… and we want to make sure we will future-proof our network," he told reporters in an interview in Taguig City.
These announcements come as Globe and PLDT have continued to be under fire for slow, expensive internet connection in the past few years.
Because of the clamor for better internet service in the Philippines, President Rodrigo Duterte expressed an intent to have a China-backed telco provider up and running by early 2018.
If the China-backed telco firm does not pan out, the government said it is open to tap other companies to help set up the 3rd major player in the country. – Rappler.com
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